For most of the world, eating dogs is completely unthinkable.
However, in certain regions of China, dog meat has been, and still is, considered a delicacy.
This is a highly controversial subject and the trade and consumption of dog meat have been heavily criticised internationally.
But now, finally, China’s government has announced that they are revising their guidelines and will now classify dogs at pets instead of livestock.
The announcement is a huge step towards ending China’s dog meat trade.
China’s Ministry of Agriculture announced the reclassification last Wednesday and have published a notice in which they state:
“As far as dogs are concerned, along with the progress of human civilization and the public concern and love for animal protection, dogs have been ‘specialized’ to become companion animals, and internationally are not considered to be livestock, and they will not be regulated as livestock in China.”
While these new guidelines do not constitute a ban on dog meat, they are an important step in the right direction and have already had a noticeable effect: the city of Shenzhen is planning on permanently banning the trade and consumption of dog or cat meat as of May 1st, 2020.
This is the first Chinese city to implement such a ban, but will likely not be the last.
A spokesperson for the Shenzhen Government explained the decision, “dogs and cats as pets have established a much closer relationship with humans than all other animals, and banning the consumption of dogs and cats and other pets is a common practice in developed countries and in Hong Kong and Taiwan.”
As with everything, change never comes overnight, but this spells a brighter future for countless of innocent pups and is an amazing step forward.
Animal lovers around the globe are celebrating the change, and we know that the best is yet to come.